Canucks defenceman Nikita Zadorov fined $5,000 for cross-checking Connor McDavid

Photo credit:Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Mike Gould
1 month ago
The NHL’s Department of Player Safety has fined Vancouver Canucks defenceman Nikita Zadorov $5,000 for cross-checking Connor McDavid after the final buzzer sounded in Sunday’s playoff game.
Zadorov and Carson Soucy both cross-checked McDavid behind the Canucks’ net shortly after time expired in Vancouver’s 4-3 win over the Oilers in Game 3 of their Western Conference semifinal playoff series.
After McDavid hit Soucy with a two-handed slash to his right leg, Soucy responded with a slash of his own before he and Zadorov both cross-checked the Oilers captain down to the ice.
Zadorov connected first with McDavid’s back, pushing him off balance into the path of Soucy’s cross-check, which ended up striking McDavid directly in the face. McDavid did not sustain an apparent injury as a result of the play.
Soucy was assessed a two-minute minor penalty for cross-checking at the 20:00 mark of the third period. Neither McDavid nor Zadorov was penalized for their actions; Soucy will have a Player Safety hearing in the coming days to determine what supplemental discipline he will face.
Here’s the video of the entire incident, via the official CanucksArmy Twitter account:
Zadorov, 29, logged 19:08 of ice time in the Canucks’ playoff victory in Edmonton on Sunday evening. The big Russian defenceman finished the game with two shots, two hits, and four penalty minutes.
The Canucks originally acquired Zadorov from the Calgary Flames back in November in exchange for a 2024 fifth-round pick (later flipped for Nikita Okhotiuk) and a 2026 third-round pick. Zadorov racked up five goals, 14 points, and 102 penalty minutes in 54 games with the Canucks after the trade.
A pending unrestricted free agent, Zadorov has found another gear with the Canucks since the playoffs started. The 6’6″ rearguard has collected four goals and seven points in nine playoff contests while averaging 20:05 of ice time per game.
The Oilers outshot the Canucks 45 to 18 in Game 3 at Rogers Place on Sunday. Still, rookie goaltender Arturs Silovs made 42 saves to help his team take a 2-1 series lead over their heavily favoured Pacific Division rivals.
It still remains to be seen whether Soucy will be available to the Canucks when they face off against the Oilers once again for Game 4 of the series in Edmonton on Tuesday night.

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